MP on witnessing a different monarchy in a digital age
The MP for Boston and Skegness has highlighted how the technological age has enabled us to witness history in the making – and how the Queen and the new King had embraced it.
“In 2012, prior to the Diamond Jubilee, the Queen hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace for national newspaper editors, the usual great and good, and, to my surprise, technology editors’ too,” he said.
“It induced the gut-wrenching dual anxiety of having both to meet Her Majesty, and to do so with your boss.
"Thankfully, the Duke of Edinburgh said technologists such as myself were there because people like us ‘knew what was going on’. It put me uniquely at ease, at least for the seconds before I realised he had just said something that I’d only ever optimistically inferred from my bosses.
“But perhaps surprisingly that ‘Digital Jubilee reception’ wasn’t a novel concept. The Queen understood she had to be seen to be believed. We knew her first in the forties and fifties via black and white photos and the wireless, that scratchily televised coronation that was so many people’s first experience of television – by the 2020s in ultra-high-definition video and in the lockdown of 2020 on Zoom.
"She moved with the times and the times moved with her. She was present in our lives in a way that moved even places like Boston or Skegness that she never visited to hold street parties in her honour and now moves many there to tears.
“I met His Majesty King Charles at a reception, perhaps surprisingly, for Roberts Radio, longstanding warrant holders. He too knows that technology can make his family’s warmth and service palpable around the world.
"And he used the opportunity to do an impression from The Goon Show, which sadly only time precludes me from recreating in this House.
"Now, with TV cameras in the Accession Council, we have already seen more of what it is to be a monarch than we ever could have done previously. Long may that continue